A. Sarkar, C. R. Wassgren
A number of studies have modeled flow and mixing of granular materials using the discrete element method (DEM). In an attempt to reduce computational costs, many of these DEM studies model particles larger than the actual particle size without investigating the implications of this assumption. Using DEM, the influence of the modeled particle size on flow and mixing in a bladed granular mixer is studied. The predicted flow microdynamics, including mixing rates, are strongly dependent on the particle diameter. The effect of particle size on macroscopic advective flow also is significant, particularly for dilute flow regions. These results suggest that the influence of particle size needs to be taken into consideration when using larger particles in DEM mixing simulations. To guide scale-up efforts, particle-size-based scaling relationships for several key flow measurements are presented.
Diffusion, Discrete element method, Mixing, Particulate flows, scale-up